Every summer, the Brian Redman race at Road America typically draws the biggest and best field in vintage racing. 2006 was no exception, with close to 500 entries. There were 60 in our class.
We had not been to Road America since 1981, but it was still somewhat familiar. The food was excellent as usual, and the weather was hot but dry.
We tested a lot during the two months preceding Road America. Every conceivable shock, spring, and sway bar combination was tested. Tires were tested- Goodyear vs. Hoosier, comparing the two brands at various heat cycles. We also tested brake pads and brake bias. We made a lot of progress!
We came to Road America confident we were finally ready to win. This year SVRA sanctioned the Brian Redman event, so again we ran with the sports racers and prototypes. The entry list included 2 Scarabs, a Chaparral, a Genie Chevy, and a host of other interesting cars. Drivers included Tony DeLorenzo, Augie Pabst, and John Hardin, who told us he had been racing since 1953!
We qualified second, but won the race. We led every lap and set the fastest lap, a 2:28.2. Handling was better after the testing, and the gearing was spot on.
In the promoter’s ‘All Corvette’ race, we finished second by 2 seconds to the infamous Dream Car Garage Corvette. That car pulled us down the straight big time. We were about even with the other top Corvettes in straight line speed, as our aero disadvantage just about makes up for our weight advantage. And, in the power department, we handicap ourselves with a stock 1965 396 intake manifold. Our engine builder says that costs us 100 HP.
Leaving Road America we think we are OK for power and weight. Tires are a given. Brakes are now dialed in. We can’t do anything about aerodynamics – our car is always going to give up aero to the 68-72 Corvette. Handling it our next big area for improvement!